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Gurr and Boyd Win in Adelaide

Wednesday, 24 February 2016 | Athletics South Australia

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Courtesy of Athletics Australia

James Gurr (NSW) has upstaged the pre-race favourites to win the men’s 800m at the Adelaide Track Classic, as Alana Boyd (Qld) was victorious the women’s pole vault.

First past the post in a race that also featured local favourite Dylan Stenson (SA, second, 1:47.79) and national record holder Alex Rowe (Vic, fourth, 1:48.39), Gurr’s time of 1:47.72 is his fastest since the New South Wales Athletics Championships in 2012 and brings him into contention in what is fast becoming one of the most hotly contested events this athletics season.

Boyd was the last to take to the runway, lining up at 4.45m and making light work of her opening height.

Unable to advance clear at 4.60m, the Australian pole vault record holder will now shift her attention to two upcoming competitions in New Zealand, before the IAAF Melbourne World Challenge acts as her final hit-out ahead of the IAAF World Indoor Championships.

“I’ve just moved out to sixteen steps and I was so focused on getting that right today that I probably wasn’t aggressive enough at the take-off and my performance is a bit off because of that. That said, now is the time to get this stuff right and I’m in a position to keep working hard,” Boyd said.

“I’m looking forward to the next few events in New Zealand, and building from there. It’s an Olympic year, the results indoors have been showing that people are stepping up and I know that I can find more. To be competitive I need to find something above 4.80 and I believe I can do that.

“I am in a good space. I can work on a few things knowing that I’m heading in the right direction and enjoy my jumping.”

In other results at the Adelaide Track Classic:

-          Lauren Ryan (Vic) clocked 9:27.77 to win the women’s under 20 3000m and become the first athlete automatically selected to the IAAF World Under 20 Championships later this year. Amelia Mazza-Downie (Vic) also crossed quicker than the qualifying time for second, in 9:31.46.

-          Matthew Denny (Qld) threw a season best of 62.15m to win the men’s discus throw from Julian Wruck (Qld, second, 58.73m).

-          Madeline Hills (nee Heiner, NSW) surged ahead of the pack in the closing stages of the women’s 1500m to take line honours in 4:11.78. Linden Hall (Vic) was second in 4:13.79, with Bridey Delaney (NSW, 4:14.94) third.

-          Anneliese Rubie (NSW) crossed the line in 53.79 to win the women’s 400m. She already boasts a qualifying performance for the Rio 2016 Olympic Games in the event.

-          The trio of Angus Armstrong (NSW, first, 5.35m), Kurtis Marschall (SA, second, 5.25m) and Declan Carruthers (SA, fourth, 5.10m) all cleared the world under 20 qualifying mark of 5.10m to set up an impressive Selection Trial for Bydgoszcz 2016 at the Australian Junior Athletics Championships next month.


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